Christ Church, Oxford Purchase World's First Allett Uplift86E Battery Powered Rotary Mower
Christ Church, Oxford has become the world’s first owners of the latest 34'' battery-powered rotary mower from Allett - the Uplift86E. This joins their Allett C34Evolution cylinder mower as the college transitions to battery-electric to power their machinery. Over the last few years the college has been increasing their number of cordless commercial battery-powered machines starting with a cordless blower, chainsaw, strimmer, edger, hedge cutter and a pole pruner.
The advantages of these machines are not only reduced carbon and other pollutant emissions, but also hugely decreased noise levels and they are lighter to use than their petrol equivalents and completely without toxic fumes discharged next to the operator and in the local environment. The machines also have significantly decreased maintenance costs and reduced the daily disruption of getting two stroke engines to start and run smoothly. All these machines are powered by the same batteries. Christ Church have also acquired a battery powered John Deere Gator utility vehicle which is used for moving people, equipment and resources around the site, as well as a Mean Green ride on zero turn rotary battery mower used in larger open areas.
The college purchased the C34Evolution battery powered cylinder mower back in 2019. This machine is a 34'' interchangeable cartridge machine that delivers a beautiful finish and has the versatility of interchangeable cartridges to complete many fine-lawn maintenance tasks, all in just one power unit. The Allett C34E uses four removable batteries, which are also used in their Uplift 86E rotary mower, deliver a run-time of up to four hours. “So by charging the batteries at lunchtime we get a full day’s work completed” says John James, Head Gardener at Christ Church. “This machine is eerily quiet with only the whirr of the blades, making it ideal for working in the Quads around the college. Comments have been made from students wondering why the groundsman is pushing a 'turned off' mower around the lawn.” The electricity cost is approximately 40p to re-charge all four batteries which is a considerable saving on fuel costs over the life of the machine.
John adds “The higher acquisition cost of these state-of-the-art mowers must be off-set against the vastly reduced energy and servicing costs which bring the lifetime ownership cost to similar levels of the petrol alternatives we could have chosen. Of course, having zero-emission machines is really only an environmental benefit if the electricity used to charge them is from a renewable or carbon free source. Following a feasibility study, we now have planning permission for the installation of a PV solar charging system on the roofs of our yard buildings facing away from the Meadow and into the sun. Once these panels are installed we will be able to truly say that our machines are green and running on sunshine.
“As technology improves and more products become available we can look forward to a future for horticultural machinery which is not only carbon and pollution free but is also much quieter. Hopefully it won’t be long before we can get more specialised equipment in battery powered form so that we can continue to reduce fossil fuel burning in our operation.”.
John James (Head Gardener, Christ Church)''Christ Church is very committed to sustainability and reducing its carbon footprint so these machines fit in fantastically well with this commitment. A huge added bonus for us is the quiet operation which means we can use them at all times even when students are in the college doing their studies. It's also great for the operator as we don't have to be concerned about operator noise exposure so much and they are just more comfortable and easier to use. Hand arm vibrations are much reduced as well. We are really pleased to be the first customer to receive the Allett Uplift86E. The battery power is great for us as we don't have to worry about petrol and the potential for spillages which damages the lawn. Having to go and get petrol which costs us a lot of money. Machinery powered by battery is much more economical and much more convenient. When they run out of charge we can just pop-in another battery and keep on going. For us presentation is the key thing. These machines give us brilliant striping and debris collection to help us achieve our immaculate lawns'' Darren Jones of Farol Ltd It is a pleasure to work with John and his team in helping them with finding the right machinery to suit their needs especially helping them to replace several machines to electric powered items. This will help reduce their carbon foot print. I’ve been selling the Allett products now for over 14 years and it is still enjoyable being out there demonstrating and selling the brand to the professional users out there Farol Ltd